Every Discipline Has Its Corresponding Freedom
Cecily and I do not have children yet. It’s a conscious and intentional choice that we made years ago for a variety of reasons, one of which is because we are lucky enough to fill our life with mentorship of teens through my role as a youth minister. It brings us great joy without the diaper changing!
But we do have nephews! At Christmas time on my side of the family, it’s customary to give small gifts to each member of the family. We hate giving toys and clothes, as these things wear out/break/pass away. My brother and his wife wisely opened up an investment account for their boys when they were born and throughout the years, we’ve chosen to make small contributions to this endeavor. This year we decided to mix things up a bit. Our financial journey has given us passion to share the power of discipline with others, as it’s transformed our life in all things. So this Christmas we sent the following letter to our two and four-year-old nephews along with small checks. I’m pretty sure this fully transitions us into that lame and out of touch aunt and uncle, but when you don’t have kids of your own, you’ve got to find someone else’s kids to brainwash!
Merry Christmas! Cecily and I hope you have an amazing time playing with Lincoln/Miles and eating lots of Christmas treats. We will miss seeing you this Christmas, as we will be on a cruise in the Caribbean! We hope Santa leaves you lots of presents under the tree. But don’t forget, Christmas is a time we set aside to think about the birth of Christ and how it has radically changed the world. It’s so much bigger than presents! In light of this, we’re asking that you do three things with this money: give, save, spend. One of my favorite theologians, Richard Foster, writes “every discipline has its corresponding freedom.” The discipline of learning to give/save/spend is a critical skill to managing money with a Kingdom perspective. The amounts and percentages are up to you. You decide what you give, save, and spend. We encourage you to think about doing this in a way that glorifies God.
Think creatively about your giving. Does your church need support? Do you have a friend or family member in need? A widow who would appreciate a friendly card?
The book of Proverbs challenges us to plan for the future. Saving money in your investment account is not only wise, it is suggested by God. You honor God with your responsibility for the future.
Spend! Have some fun with some of your money! Think about things that bring you experiences rather than momentary pleasure. Memories last for a lifetime!
We love you both and look forward to watching you grow into men of God! With Love, Dusty and Cecily